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Blast from the Past

430 units once planned for Chestnut Street area

Old plans draw laughs


by Chris Crawford

    Last Monday's Planning Board meeting was cut short when Scott Aghahibian recused himself from a public hearing on Liberty Mutual's request to do "renovations" at their Frankland Road facility, because he does business with them. That brought the maximum number of voting members to 4, too few for a voting quorum. Liberty Mutual is the third highest property taxpayer in Hopkinton.

      After the meeting adjourned, Planning Director Elaine Lazarus showed the Board several plans from the 1970s that she had unearthed from Planning Board records. “I was going to throw these out,” said Director Lazarus, “but I thought I’d show you guys how funny they are.”

     Throughout the plans are hand-drafted maps, hand-drawn decorations (both not seen since the advent of computer-aided design), and comically dated building designs. But the most surprising plan of all is the very large “Woodland Village” apartment complex from 1971. The plan, proposed by the defunct Hometech Co. of Northborough, was for 430 two-bedroom units to be built near the intersection of Chestnut Street and Ash Street.

     It is not known exactly why the apartment complex was not approved, but it would be suffice to say it was not in the character of 1971 Hopkinton. As can be seen from today’s satellite map, quite a different picture has arisen: a much smaller number of single-family homes.    


(HopNews graphic, top, by Chris Crawford). Note: The area inside the red line is the perimeter of the defunct proposal. Chestnut Street is yellow, Ash Street is green. The proposal called for over 400 units in an area that ended up with less than 70 homes. Map is a Google Map, a satellite image 5 years old. Right, photo of detail of old drawing.


DOWN DOG (Celtic Rock and Fiddle)

Hopkinton Town Common

5:30 pm

July 17, 2005 (Today)

White  bird

July 16, 2005 — This seagull flying over the reservoir avoided the toll house on the way into the Hopkinton Sate Park. Their slow speed, comfort with humans,  and joy of gliding makes them an easy bird to photograph.

Man jumps off corporate ladder

Lands in tea



by Elizabeth Eidlitz

July 16, 2005 — Hopkinton business owner Tom Eck has joined numbers of people who work successfully in high tech jobs for many years, reach middle management level, then look in the mirror one morning and ask, “is this what I want to do for another 20 years until retirement?”


Eck decided to climb down the corporate ladder, and walk away--in fact, he jumped off the ladder, landing safely on both entrepreneurial feet.


In that leap of faith, sixteen years ago, Upton Tea Imports began.


Several factors influenced what Eck considers a “fortuitous decision:” He could afford to spend a year working out of his house in Upton assessing the mail order tea market in the U.S. He’d traveled internationally as Asian-Pacific Director of Customer Service for Stratus Computer, Inc. His frequent flier mileage allowed him to establish contacts to uncover the best sources of teas. He remembered fondly being his own boss as a successful teenage entrepreneur in Pueblo Colorado. FULL STORY


Encore showing of Video of Opening of

Fruit Street Property Available

in Player on left.

• Ribbon cutting

• Speech

Right-clicking on the playing video will offer zoom, full-screen and other options.




8:49 pm There was a report of baby goats in the road on East Main Street...

5:56 pm A male caller on Wood Street reported that he was hit by another vehicle that fled the scene...

4:44 pm A gas attendant on West Main Street reported a gas run off.  Officer Aaron O'Neil...

All this and more in an updated Police News


Want a wastewater discharge at Fruit Street?  


77 readers voted in the poll, resulting in 29 votes in favor of a waste water treatment plant on the town-owned land on Fruit Street, and 48 against.

Tragedy averted at State Park

July 15, 2005 — A tragedy was averted today when four people who were in a canoe that capsized were helped to shore by a couple of good Samaritans and the Hopkinton Fire Department. In the top photo, Firefighter Santucci and Lt. Lukey in the department's motorized inflatable raft survey the area for loose paddles or lifejackets after the individuals made it to shore, as Lt. Ken Clark communicates with other public safety officers. But prior to that:


Below, Two kayakers assist the four people from the capsized canoe, as well as helping bring the canoe ashore. The capsized canoe is in the center. Only three had personal floatation devices on at this time.

Some frantic sounding orders from one of the kayakers (Above) prompted Lt. Clark to ask if everything was okay.

"One of them is having trouble," was the answer from one of the Samaritans.

"One in distress!" was the call from Lt. Clark, as two rescue swimmers who had been waiting in the waters off shore jumped in on cue and swam to the incoming boats (Below), as other firefighters ran to deploy boats.

Below, rescue swimmers Scott Jurasic and Jim Frederick reach the first of the people in the water. All made it to shore safely and were accounted for.

Green Acres

July 15, 2005 — Kristen Konan of Keown Orchards Farm Stand hands Eilene Reich her purchase at Weston Nurseries Farmer's Market, which is held every Friday.

No Tom Sawyer here

July 15, 2005 — Hopkinton native Patrick Donovan plies his trade, staining and sealing this fence on a wooded property near the center of town.

On the hook


July 15, 2005 — The driver of this blue Neon, which about to be taken away by Ted's of Fayville wrecking service, was accused of a hit and run yesterday. Officer Aaron O'Neil, who is shielding the sun from his eyes in this photo, wrote a criminal application to the driver for Unlicensed Operation and Leaving the Scene. A male cell phone caller reported that he had been hit and was following the vehicle which failed to stop. Officer O'Neil caught up with the suspect on Wood Street across from Firehouse Pond and issued the citation. The vehicle was also missing its front license plate. Red plates come in pairs, although the older, green plates are singular and belong only on the rear of a vehicle.

The Police News will be updated shortly.

Planning Board approves language of nine-page Decision on Whitehall Estates

~ Board of Appeals files Amended Decision on Harvey


by Robert Falcione

July 14, 2005 — On Monday, the Planning Board voted 5-0 to approve the language of the Decision to deny Whitehall Estates garden style apartments proposed for a piece of land a few hundred feet from the shores of Lake Whitehall in the Woodville area of Hopkinton.

    The project had come under fire from the Friends of Whitehall, principally made up of a group of neighbors and nearby residents of the failed proposal.

    The proponent of the project has 20 days from Monday, July 11, 2005, in which to appeal the Decision by filing in Superior Court or Land Court.

    The Monday evening vote was to approve the language of the Decision. Because there were only five members present, all had to vote to pass the motion to approve for a majority. John Coolidge, who abstained from voting on the approval at the last public hearing citing advice from Town Counsel, did however vote on the approval of the wording, saying the Decision had already been made and he was just voting on the language.

    The Planning Board would like to get E. L. Harvey and Sons in for a review of their plans. When asked if there had been any prior meetings, John Coolidge, former Chairman, said, "Yes." This writer walked in on one of those Town Hall meetings which had not been posted and was told that because there was no full Board that posting was not necessary. To read the nine-page Whitehall Estates Decision, click here.

     In a related matter, the last of the members of the Board of Appeals was to sign their Amended Decision on the approval of the E.L. Harvey & Sons expansion into Hopkinton today. For opponents of that Amended Decision, the 20-day clock started ticking today. An opposition group, the Cedar Swamp Conservation Trust, appealed the original Decision, but withdrew during the process. They have the right to appeal this new Amended Decision, because it was heard by the Board of Appeals as a new filing.

11:28 pm ~ UPDATE:

Missing man has been found safe.


July 14, 2005 11:28 pm — According to htthtthhttp://www.phjoa press release from the Ashland Police Department, the person presumed missing, Adam Yanski, has been found safe and unharmed.

      "One of our officers saw him walking down the street and the Fire Department checked him out," said a dispatcher at the Ashland Police Headquarters.

      "I just wanted to be alone," he said.

9:00 pm ~ Man missing in Ashland ~ feared drowned (Update above)

Hopkinton called to assist

No connection believed to the recent armed robbery


Adam Yanski
Missing since 07/14/05
5' 7", 150 lbs. brown eyes, mustache, black long hair, usually tied back in a pony tail. Last seen wearing blue jeans, and an olive green shirt anyone having seen him today around the Ashland State Park Boat Landing please contact the Ashland Police @ 508-881-1212


Below, Hopkinton Fire Lt. Carl Harris helps secure the boat onto the trailer after helping search the water.

July 14, 2005 9:00 pm— Adam Yanski, 32, a well known Ashland resident who works for NAPA supply in Ashland, was the subject of an intense search of the Ashland State Park and Reservoir this evening by at least a dozen State and local agencies.

      "This is out of character for him," said the Commanding Officer, Chief William Kee of the Ashland Fire Department (Photo below, far right).

      "He did not show at court in Boston for a very important [Probate Court] matter. He did not show up for work. His car has been here for several hours. His father became very concerned. He is well known in the community and well liked," said Chief Kee.

       A reporter asked if it was possible if he is simply at a Red Sox game with someone else?

      "That's what we're hoping," said the Chief.

      The departments conducted land searches with dogs as well as boat searches by grid.

      "The weather has kept the helicopter from coming and the lack of light is holding the divers off," said the Chief. However he did say that the morning light will be a different story if he is still missing.

      When asked if there was any connection to the recent alleged armed robbery, one Police Officer at the scene answered no.

     "How you can be sure," he was asked.

     "We can't be," he said.

     The Boston television media was on the scene as well as several print publications.


Photo below, Hopkinton Fire Chief Gary Daugherty in the center with the blue shirt, Ashland Chief William Kee on right. Hopkinton brought many assets to the scene as well as personnel. Holliston covered the Ashland Fire Station.

Breaking big ones into little ones

July 14, 2005 — Jeff Ward helps his dad break up some cement from around the side of his home on Main Street this afternoon (He is wearing safety goggles.).

 Hopkinton Matters

Summer Program at Library

July 14, 2005 — Above, Jay Mankita presented The Day the School Went Wild to young people at the Hopkinton Public Library this afternoon to an engaged audience of children and parents. The program, which teaches personal responsibility through songs and stories, is sponsored in part by the Hopkinton Public Library, Massachusetts Regional Library Systems, the Massachusetts Board of Library commissioners and the Museum of fine Arts in Boston.

Below left, Kathy Baumann with Sophie in red and Ava listen to warm up jokes. At least one child in the audience had the punch line to most. Below, right Matthew LaFlash, 5, gets a laugh from Jay Makita


Town Accountant needs money

Heidi Kriger to bike ride 170 miles in two days


July 14, 2005 — Town Accountant Heidi Kriger is looking for money again. She is riding her bicycle in the Pan Mass Challenge for the sixth year in a row on a trip which will take her from Wellesley to Bourne, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. The next day she will ride the entire length of the Cape from Bourne to Provincetown. The ride starts in Wellesley at 7:30 am on August 6, 2005.

      The Pan Mass Challenge is the major fund raiser for the Jimmy Fund that supports Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and purports to be the largest athletic fundraising event in the country. According to the group's website, it contributes 97 cents of every dollar raised.

      Ms. Kriger's goal is to top the $3,000 minimum pledge of sponsorship that each rider must promise in order to ride. Last year, she raised over $4,000.

      The first year Ms. Kriger rode because a friend asked he to join the ride, but since then it has touched closer to home. Some of her friends, family members and coworkers have been diagnosed with cancer.

       To help Ms. Kriger reach her goal of $3,000 minimum or to pass her record of $4,000, please call 508-497-9705 or log on to the Pan Mass Challenge website and choose "Make a Donation" and follow the links to Heidi Kriger.      

 Rural feel

Look through any window

July 13, 2005 — This gnarly old tree on Pond Street gives the phrase "wooden frame" a new meaning as the wild lilies can be seen through the opening in its side.

Hole in one

July 13, 2005 — Avid golfer Ted Bitensky of Hopkinton Gourmet mugs for the camera when asked about the hole-in-one that he got yesterday at the Framingham Country Club. Working next to him is employee Asia Burinskaya.

      "We started on the back nine, and I was only going to play four holes. But I got the hole-in-one on the eleventh, so when that happens, you just have to play all the way through," he said.

     "It was about 140 yards to the hole, but we couldn't see it. Rick Maloney was with me, and we both heard it hit the pole," he said. "The green is on a rise, so we didn't see it, but four other golfers ahead of us did."

     According to Mr. Bitensky, this was his second hole-in-one.

Like a missing tooth

July 13, 2005 — A thief who likely has a similar BMW which is no longer missing its right grill, actually unscrewed the right side grill from this BMW belonging to a HopNews reader.

       "BMW wants $250.00 for the grill," he said.

       The thief's motivation is clear.

 Rural feel

Toothpick, please

July 13, 2005 — This little bird likely has the remains of a dragonfly hanging from its beak, off of Pond Street this morning.

 Rural feel

You oughta be careful

July 13, 2005 — Also off of Pond Street in the Southern end of Lake Whitehall this morning was this creature which appears to be an otter. NOTE: A reader believes this is a muskrat. It could be. We've photographed them there before.

Temperature of a different hue

July 12, 2005 — These unreal colors on the building of Main Street Specialties are from the added "warm" light of a low, western sun, which also adds to the painterly effect of the pastel sky.

Main Street Specialties is having a tasting on Bastille Day, July 14, 2005 featuring cuisine de la France. Sample Fine French Pates, cheeses from France and Europe, French baguettes, light flaky croissants and chocolate, from 5-7 pm.

Senior Center preparations

July 12, 2005 — Matt Gogan, standing, and Mike Fredette of the Water/Sewer Department dig for the main shut off for Mayhew Street today so they can add a new main to support the added needs of the new Senior Center, which is to be started soon.

Your home office deserves a new home at a real office.


See Charles Baker for the Design for you!


POLICE NEWS now up-to-date


1:05 am A caller on Hopkins Road reported a possible domestic disturbance...

12:38 pm A dump truck was caught in live wires on Second Road...

12:34 am A caller on East Main Street reported goats in the road... 

7:48 pm The Ashland Police Department requested assistance with finding suspects involved in an armed robbery... (photo).



Turkey dinner coming up

Seniors pay only $6.00


By Ann Di Leo

               July is not quite the way I like it…rain…cold…windy. But it is still July, and I like to think we’ll have plenty of long warm afternoons to sit and swing.

               We also have some fun events to attend. One of the best times will be the Ice Cream Social, presented in Davis Hall, July 18 at 1 p.m. by Amelia Sell. Ice cream is donated by Bryers. Bring some fancy toppings.

                The biggest event of the month is Christmas in July, a turkey dinner

On Tuesday, July 19th at noon at the senior center, catered by T.J.s. The cost is $6. Please contact the center to sign up. FULL STORY.

Are you HotChick or TheLoveMan? Perhaps simply CameraGuy or Teacher'sApple will do. Well if you want to reserve your screen name for the Hopkinton Room, go to HopNews Talk City room now and register, before someone gets your favorite nickname.

Only two entries in the rural Character Photo Contest. We need ten entries for a  "quorum."

 Cheryl Perreault's Poet's Corner

Paths by Polly brown

Polly Brown is a published poet who resides in Hopkinton.  “The Path” was inspired by an area located in Hopkinton State Park. Perhaps other fans of the state park might recognize this beautiful place of mention.  Poet John Hildebidle states “as Polly Brown puts it, by paying attention even to the immediate neighborhood, you can understand more fully “how wide the world can be.”  More of Polly’s poetry can be found in her published collection of poems titled Blue Heron Stone which is published by Every Other Thursday Press located in Cambridge, MA. ~ Cheryl Perreault.

July 11, 2005 — Ellie Ularich, who is an institution at the Sunday Concerts on the Common in year, is flanked by her sister on her left, and Joyce and Allison Blaney.

If a tree falls...

July 11, 2005 — The Hopkinton Police are investigating the cutting of this tree and the apparent intentional blocking of the Fruit Street property access road on Sunday. The DPW moved the tree to permit access. The temporary silt-fencing which bordered the designated parking area was also torn. down. In addition, residents have complained that dirt bikes are speeding through the area which has been opened for walking bicycling and hiking, passive recreation is all that is currently allowed.

 Rural feel

Ducks on the half-shell

July 11, 2005 — These ducks are enjoying some sun, rest, and grooming in the little pond south of Pond Street. Although there may be snapping turtles that large in the pond, they are on a rock. (What kind of ducks are these?).

Armed robbery in Ashland ~ Hopkinton PD called to assist

In addition to Holliston and State Police

July 10, 2005 — Hopkinton Police was called to assist, as was Holliston Police,  by the Ashland Police to help set up a perimeter to watch for the suspects in an armed robbery, described as a white male with a shotgun, and a black female with a bat, at around 7:30 pm this evening. According to Ashland Police LT. Scott Rohmer, the man had been described as having a scruffy beard, as if he were homeless.

     The brazen armed robbery of $70 - $90 from a man fishing at the Ashland State Park allegedly took place on Spring Street in Ashland, just North of East Street in Hopkinton. The couple was last seen walking north on Spring Street toward the Clinton Street area of Hopkinton.

     Above, a Massachusetts State Police helicopter equipped with infrared capabilities flew a grid over the hundreds of acres of woods surrounding the area of the crime.

Above, Ashland Police Lt. Scott Rohmer (Center. tee shirt) talks on his radio to the helicopter above while surrounded by cruisers and Police Officers. Although it was unknown if the couple had a vehicle, Lt. Rohmer said, "We are operating as if they are still in the area."

     Below, the victim's vehicle, with the window alleedly smashed in by the female with the bat. (Some areas blacked in to protect the victim's identity ).

Fountain of love

July 10, 2005 — Julia Markey runs around the base of the fountain on Hopkinton Common, which dwarfs her,  to delight her dad and mom (Off-camera).

Three's company

July 10, 2005 — Dappled and diffused sunlight falls upon Tracy Maurer as she takes Thomas, left, and Benjamin, 7 mos, for a stroll through the Hopkinton Common while the Heritage String Band played songs of a rural America gone by.

 Rural feel

In the round

July 10, 2005 — Connor Schults, 9, gives Ally Mercier a ride on his draught pony, which is from Amish country, at a family get together at the home of Sandy and Dick Varnum. The circular pen, adjacent corrals and surrounding area were clean as a whistle.

You've come a long way, Honda

July 10, 2005 — This couple was part of a charity bike run that roared through Hopkinton around noon yesterday. The bike above has three wheels and twice as many cylinders.

 Rural Feel

This land is your land

July 9, 2005 — Cal Webb and son Patrick, 4, took a walk on the newly opened Fruit Street Property today. There is a parking area at the head of trails which traverse about another half mile or more into the property.